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Formal Debate Peanut Gallery Thread -- Catholic/Orthodox Dialogue -- The Office of the Papacy

Discussion in 'Traditional Theology' started by MarkRohfrietsch, Dec 5, 2015.

  1. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    Two posts are up!
     
  3. Cappadocious

    Cappadocious Well-Known Member

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    "Formal debate" is the last refuge of the scoundrel.
     
  4. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    Hi Athanasias!

    You asked me to talk with you and join you in this thread.
    To clarify, Jesus did not give a direct, clear order for this supremacism.

    Main PRACTICAL reason EOs don't want to reunite with ROme is because of third "secret weapon" of RCs. LOL You are even referring to this problem as your "secret weapon".

    Yes, EOs disagree with this. Only maybe Bible and Councils are infallible for EOs.

    Whether you think this is true or not is only provable in the believer's own arbitrariness.
    If you accept everything Pope teaches ex cathedra, then you have no real problem maybe.
    But EOs DON"T accept everything Pope teaches ex cathedra, so we don't agree.

    This is all circular reasoning and arbitrariness whether in real life Pope is infallible ex cathedra. It's like SOLA SCRIPTURA- it COULD be true in theory, but we don't think it's realistic.

    A protestant COULD read Bible sola scriptura and by a miracle have perfect answers to everything from Infallible Bible. But this is not realistic because humans are fallible in understanding.

    God could use miracle powers to make all Pope decisions, including EX CATHEDRA ones infallible, but IMO I don't think it's realistic if we already know Popes have been heretics.

    There is no way to disprove SOLA SCRIPTURA in theory, just as there is no way to disprove PAPAL ex Cathedra INFALLIBILITY in theory. Why? Because God could make miracles like you said through Holy Spirit so that Pope ex Cathedra is ALWAYS right EVEN THOUGH we know that Popes are fallible and cane be excommunicated as Popes.

    In real life, we Orthodox believe that this is way too much power to give one simple fallible human man, whether or not he is your church leader! But we cannot prove our belief to you, and you cannot prove our belief to us.

    My belief is that popes by virtue of their office are not "miracle men" or infallible, therefore, I think that God does not give them personal authority of infallibility "ex cathedra" like a Christian version of a "godlike" Roman emperor.

    Orthodoxy has many centuries teaching against Papal infallibilty and papal supremacy. If we accept these things, we are not EOs any more but converts to Pope's rule and all his "ex cathedra" teachings. If you ask us to accept them, you are not making dialogue for equal reunion, but a dialogue to make EOs as a church convert to Pope's Catholicism.

    Yes, but Caiaphas was not always "infallible" ex cathedra even if he could make a prophecy!+

    Catholicism's fulfillment of Judaism is neat!
    Papal Supremacy over EOs over everything is not neat, just like a pre-Reformation Martin Luther becoming Pope over RCs is not neat for RCs.

    Yes, you have a religious "faith" that the simple nonmiraculous, fallible man, the Pope has by virtue of his office a miracle gift of infallibility. This is not EO belief. It gives one simple nonmiracle fallible man an "infallible gift". It's like a slave mentality, but slaving to Pope's infallible ex cathedra statements.

    Yes, this is why EOs cannot reunite. Because in practice it means losing real ability to contradict Pope.

    Imagine this: New Pope makes "infallible" teaching against EOs, and RCs agree and EO bishops at an RC council agree. End of story for EOs. EOs cannot contradict this according to RC system. RCs will say "It's infallible! Pope said it was ex cathedra! Even EO bishops there agreed!"
    So EOs lose all ability in practice to contradict any such bad supposedly "ex cathedra" decision by a Pope whom we KNOW is fallible in his person and even in his office when he doesn't speak ex cathdra.

    For EOs, RC church has too many ideas about its own "infallibility". This is why Protestant Reformation happened and why EOs don't want to reunite. But supposedly "infallible" RC church has trouble seeing that.

    RCs are very happy to talk about reunion. In reality, unless those RCs are able to consider give up papal infallibility, such talk is a big fish talking about eating a little fish, in that "infallible", "supreme" RCism would eat up EOism.

    I want reunion to happen, but not in that way whereby EOs accept papal supremacism and get eaten.
     
  5. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    EOs and RCs have millions of people, and there is a major portion who are very entrenched in their beliefs. So I think at a THEORETICAL level I cannot expect to persuade the RC Church to give up Papal supremacy.

    I could say that from our perspective we do not have FAITH in the idea that one simple human nonmiraclous fallible man, by virtue of his office in his person has a miraculous GIFT of INFALLIBILITY whenever he speaks on behalf of the collective as a whole. In practice we have seen cases where the Pope has been in error in history, and EOs believe that some RC ex cathedra "infallible" statements were wrong too. There have been at times cases where it seems the church was generally under mistaken ideas like iconoclasm, and only a dissenting group of "Orthodox" (iconodules) were right. This is why EOs only consider Ecumenical COUNCILs "infallible", NOT Pope "ex cathedra" statements supported by the broad collective. papal infallibility combined with Papal Supremacy is a dangerous idea, because a Pope claim COULD be PERCEIVED as "ex cathedra" and PERCEIVED as accepted by the church and then enforced like a dictatorship.

    As a result, I think EOs have the same kind of criticisms of Papal Infallibility that Lutherans have.

    HOWEVER, I don't expect to be able to DISPROVE this supposed permanent miracle ability of Popes, because theoretically God could give Popes this power, just like God could make Noah's Flood happen or could put an alien intelligent civilization on Mars in the 1950's if he had wanted to, or all kinds of other "unrealistic" ideas.

    The ONLY thing I can expect to prove is why from our EO perspetive we definitely don't WANT to accept Papal Supremacy: Because if the RC Pope is "supreme", he becomes all of our Patriarchs' "bishop", and even though we disagree with RCs on some theology and practices, under the RC system we have to accept the Pope's orders just like the Eastern Catholics have to.
    AS A PRACTICAL RESULT, Reuniting with Rome under Papal Supremacy in essence means everyone in Orthodoxy converts to the Pope's Catholicism, no ifs, and, or buts about it!

    SEE this diagram: http://images.slideplayer.com/14/4329879/slides/slide_18.jpg

    A simpler one:

    [​IMG]

    Some RCs may try to make it sound nicer like the Pope will let us do things. We could even "agree" so that he lets us. BUT the ability under papal supremacy is still there for the Pope to order us in theology and in practices, even if a past Pope made some agreement. After all, what is stronger, INFALLIBILITY or a mere agreement?

    RCs and EOs can give tons of arguments about theories why either side is right or wrong, BUT IN REAL LIFE, in PRACTICE, EOs cannot accept papal supremacy and still be EOs because it will mean a vertical subordination to Rome.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
  6. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    Rakovsky, I have moved your posts here. The thread where you posted them was for the formal One on One debate. This is the Peanut Gallery. The FD seems stalled, so I'll invite @Athanasias into this thread.
     
  7. Athanasias

    Athanasias Regular Member

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    Hey Mark its good to talk to you and thanks so much. Is there anyway that Rav and I can start another dialog in the one on one thread? A different one perhaps on the Papacy? Rav has some great points and I think a few innocent misconceptions too and I would love to do a one on one dialog about this stuff without the rest of the peanut gallery chiming in as I think in dialog multiple people against one really muddies the waters and its always harder to talk to 2 or more people at once instead of one on one.
     
  8. Athanasias

    Athanasias Regular Member

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    Thanks Rav you have some great insight and good questions and objections. I am asking Mark if we can do our own one on one dialog on this and then if possible I will pick up and answer some of your good objections from my Catholic pov. I think you had some real concerns and good points and a few misconceptions. Any way if we get that set up I will answer this as a one on one dialog and not debate. In this dialog if we do it will not be about proving who is right but rather listening to each others theology and opinions on these things and trying to clear away roadblocks and of course stating our agreements or disagreement and why. In a dialog nobody wins nor am I out to prove 100% the Papacy is true. I simply present the Catholic teaching which I hold to and its reasons and try to listen to your reasons and if I can dialog on the differences of why we hold what we do. I am not out to prove anything. In dialog we both listen to each other and often times agree to dissagree but also we both open our minds and hearts to the others perspective. It has to be prayerful and friendly because its hard as we are fallen creatures who lean towards pride. But fear not hopefully we will get our own dialog and I will try to answer your good objections. This is a slow piecemeal dialog that must go a little at a time. I hope to build a good understanding of the Eo position in this and i hope to provide a systematic biblical and historical and miraculous understanding of the Catholic side. Talk to you soon my brother.

    God bless you!

    In Christ the King through Mary the Queen Mother,

    Athanasais
     
  9. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    Thanks. I like Catholic people alot and understand what and why they think certain things about the papacys power.
    My argument is not whether I can disprove papal supremacy In theory, as I think that in theory I cant. At least not enough to effectively persuade the other side.

    I can only show what our own smaller church's vital interest is in avoiding coming under papal supremacism.

    I can't prove that ex cathedra gifts of Popes are fake. But I can show why Eo's don't want for papal power to be ruled over us. If someone can't understand the simple, extreme, vital problem papal Supremacy creates, it is hard to have a constructive dialogue. It is just a very big "infallible" fish dialoging with a little fish on dinner options.
     
  10. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    I can; if you and @rakovsky want; start a proposal thread here: Formal Debate Proposals

    I will get this set up for you guys; but save something to discuss in the debate thread!
     
  11. Athanasias

    Athanasias Regular Member

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    Thank you my friend. We will!
     
  12. samir

    samir Well-Known Member

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    What happened to the debate/prayerful dialogue? Will it resume?

    Seems like papal supremacy should be easy to prove. If it's so important then surely the ECFs at least mentioned it somewhere. Papal infallibility should be easy to prove wrong - just find one time a pope taught error while speaking ex cathedra.
     
  13. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    However, in practice it's hard because there are not many statements Popes have made "ex cathedra".
     
  14. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    You guys still game? I can set this up today if you like; I'm home with the flu.
     
  15. Athanasias

    Athanasias Regular Member

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    I am hoping dialog will start back up. I tried to contact her to see when we can continue but never got a response. I am enjoying the dialog so far and we have not even breached the scriptural, Jewish, or historical evidences for the Papacy yet. We barely touched upon a few misconceptions my partner in dialog had about the papacy. I hope yall have enjoyed it so far. There is a alot to study on this issue. God bless you. I hope to resume soon if she wants to.

    In Jesus through Mary,

    Athanasias
     
  16. samir

    samir Well-Known Member

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    I see these statements occurred infrequently so I think Orthodox Christians could make the argument that since papal infallibility is defined so narrowly that hardly any statements qualify then it isn't very useful because it would mean the Pope of Rome can be wrong most of the time.

    Do you think the Pope of Rome ever taught error in the few times when he claimed to speak ex cathedra or would you say that although he hasn't done so yet he could in the future?
     
  17. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    Who knows. If a Pope announces that he is speaking ex cathedra on some new topic, even 0 new topics, I think alot of Catholics will go along with it. It's not a nonissue because we shouldn't agree to something so potentially harmful to us.

    Both.
    One time he taught that Mary was born without the guilt of original sin. But Orthodox don't believe original sin's personal guilt is not handed down anyway to anyone, as in our system, personal guilt is not biologically inherited. You aren't personally guilty for your biological parents' mistakes.
    I am not sure if RCs would agree, but they do think original sin's full personal guilt is inherited, not just in the sense of real world consequences of Adam's actions.
    Maybe we could do hairsplitting here, but there is a common difference expressed typically.
    I think the immaculate conception being held by only some RCs would not be bad enough to stop reunion, but in this case the RCs have made it an "infallible" doctrine.
     
  18. Athanasias

    Athanasias Regular Member

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    The Eastern Catholics do not see it as a roadblock and they have found a way to translate it so it makes sense to them. In fact the teaching of Mary's immaculate sinlessness is rooted in mostly Eastern Fathers. But that is another discussion that maybe we can dialog on one on one in a debate forum.

    To quote an Eastern Catholic Dr Dragoni:

    "There are two terms used in the definition that are completely foreign to Eastern Christian theology: "merits" and "stain." Both of these terms are of very late origin, and came to mean very specific things in the scholastic system. But to us Eastern Christians, who still use only the theological expressions of the Church Fathers, these terms are completely alien. So is this a problem, or isn't it?

    I don't believe that this a problem at all. If something is written in a language that you can't understand, you simply TRANSLATE it! With some very basic knowledge of scholastic theological terminology, what Pope Pius IX is saying becomes very obvious: From the very first moment of her existence, Mary was miraculously preserved from all sin. We Easterns would go even a step further: she wasn't just preserved from sin, but was graced with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

    Also, the definition speaks of Mary being "free from every stain of original sin." In the East we have always spoken of Mary's perfect holiness. The language "free from every stain of original sin" is really a somewhat negative formulation in comparison. In fact, this definition speaks of Mary as being "absent of something (the stain of sin)," while we would prefer to speak of her as being "full of something (the Holy Spirit)." In this regard I think that the Eastern approach makes a marvelous contribution to the understanding of this dogma. So does Pope John Paul II:

    "In fact, the negative formulation of the Marian privilege, which resulted from the earlier controversies about original sin that arose in the West, must always be complemented by the positive expression of Mary's holiness more explicitly stressed in the Eastern tradition." (Pope John Paul II, General Audience June 12, 1996)

    So, the Holy Father agrees that the Eastern understanding of the Immaculate Conception actually helps to elucidate the meaning behind the definition."

    Taken from this site:

    http://www.east2west.org/doctrine.htm#IC
     
  19. samir

    samir Well-Known Member

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    I'm looking forward to seeing the historical evidence for the papacy. I like to see the big picture and know how everything started. I know Protestantism started when people broke away from the Catholic Church in the West but I'm unsure about whether the Roman Catholic or Orthodox Church came first. From what I've studied so far, it seems like the churches had separate traditions and different ideas on the structure of the church long before they formally split which seems to me like they were always separate which is unlike other divisions where small groups of people (like the Donatists, Novatians, Baptists, etc.) separated themselves from the larger body of Christ usually due to favoring some new heresy over the ancient Christian faith.
     
  20. rakovsky

    rakovsky Newbie

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    Orthodox don't accept the RC concept of inheritance of original sin. I see no acknowledgement of that point in the article above.
    Just because the ex-Orthodox ECs have been able to make themselves accept RC teachings doesnt make them comptable.

    The point is, Orthodox dont believe in giving ex cathedra power to the Pope. We dont believe that the pope has this magical ability of perfection whenever he makes such statements.
    We dont agree with giving the potential power to the pope to tell us to obey him about everything if he wants to or announce if he wants to that his decisions are perfect and ex cathedra, as if he was the bishop totally vertically and directly over every person and patriarch in the world. That is not Orthodoxy. And there is nothing you can say to stop that problem for us except force or brainwash us into thinking this one fallible potential heretic (RCs acknowledge that Popes have been heretics in the past) has this solely unique ability of "ex cathedra infallibility".

    I don't see anything constructive about this topic unless RCs can be actually open minded and allow that there is a good chance EOs might be right on this.
     
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